Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

By | March 24, 2022

According to acronymmonster, Pittsburgh is the second largest city by population in the state of Pennsylvania, the 10th in descending order among the large urban centers of the United States, the capital of Allegheny County, at 212 meters above sea level, is located at the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers, whose waters form the Ohio, the main left tributary of the Mississippi. It has a continental climate: the average annual temperature is 11 °, 7 °; that of January, of -0 °, 6; that of July, 23rd, 9th; the excursion between absolute minimums and maximums is very large, ranging from −28 °, 9 to 39 °, 4. The snowfall is considerable, equal to 775 mm. yearly; the rainfall amounts to 920 mm. per year and are distributed in each month, but with a prevalence of the summer months (July, 115 mm.). Northwest winds absolutely prevail. Point, which has become the business center of greater Pittsburgh. The morphology of the place (hills furrowed by wide valleys crossed by navigable rivers) is clearly reflected in the topographical structure of the city, which has been extending along the banks of the three rivers, occupying the intervening areas, also expanding thanks to the numerous territorial aggregations and neighboring towns, which occurred in several times (1837, 1847, 1868, 1874, 1895, etc.). In the sec. XX the most important aggregation was that of the city of Allegheny (1907), built on the right bank of the homonymous river and on the Ohio, in front of Pittsburgh. The population of the city has been increasing rapidly: 1565 residents in 1800, 15,369 in 1830, 67,863 in 1850, 235,071 in 1880, 451,512 in 1900, 533,905 in 1910, 588,343 in 1920, 669. 817 in 1930 (the population of Allegheny City is also included for the 1830-1900 census). Upstream and downstream of Pittsburgh, along the river arteries, there is a succession of smaller towns, attracted to the economic orbit of the metropolis. The ethnic composition in 1930 was as follows: Whites born to indigenous parents, 40.6%; Whites born to foreign parents, 34.8%; Whites born abroad, 16.3%; Negroes and other races, 8.3%. Of the Whites born abroad (total of 109,072 individuals) the most important nuclei were given by Italians (18,156 individuals), Poles (15,251), English, Scots, Welsh and Northern Irish (14,471), Germans (14,409), Russians (9224), Free State Irish (7315) and Czechoslovakians (6670).

The city has great industrial and commercial importance; out of a total of 278,591 people over the age of 10, employed in various economic activities in 1930, 34.4% were employed in crafts and industry, 27% in commerce and communications. The number of workers employed in large industry was 67,420 in 1909, 83,290 in 1919, 65,414 in 1925, 61,503 in 1929. The city is located in the center of a grandiose industrial district: in Allegheny county in 1929 they worked 155,374 workers, which rose to 227,221 in the so-called Pittsburgh Industrial Area, which also includes the counties of Beaver, Washington and Westmoreland. The fundamental industry is that of the blast furnace for the production of iron and steel. With more than 55 blast furnaces, the area is undoubtedly the first in the United States. About 60,000 workers worked in Allegheny County in 1929, and 15,333 in the city (over 30,000 in 1919). This location and development are due to geographical and economic causes: the rise of the city at the intersection of very important navigable waterways (Monongahela, Allegheny, Ohio), which allow traffic for the Mississippi basin and the Great Lakes, favoring the transport of iron ores (average of 10-15 million tons per year) from the embarkation ports of Lake Superior; the construction of a dense network of railways that have made the metropolis a first-rate railway center; the presence of massive coal deposits, of which the main producers are the counties of Allegheny, Washington, Westmoreland, Fayette, in an excellent position with respect to Pittsburgh and nearby towns; the ease of transporting fuel by river and rail; the presence of abundant natural gas. The factories are located on the banks of the three rivers, crossed by 16 bridges, along which great works of unloading minerals and coal are lined up. For a long time the city was called the Smoky City; currently Steel City or even Electric City. It is favored by an excellent network of waterways (through Ohio and Mississippi it is connected with New Orleans through the services of the American Barge Line Company); it is a very important railway junction with the Baltimore and Ohio lines; Pennsylvania; Allegheny and South Sibe; Pittsburgh, Allegheny and Mc Kee’s Rocks; Pittsburgh and Lake Eric; Pittsburgh and West Virginia Railroads; it is served by the airlines of Pennsylvania Air lines and Transcontinental and Western Air, on the New York-Los Angeles-San Francisco great transcontinental artery route.

Monuments. – Of the buildings the most notable is perhaps the Allegheny Court House and Gaol (1884-88), designed by Henry Hobson Richardson in the southern French Romanesque style. There are also several beautiful churches: Christ Church, by Halsey Wood, in the Richardson Romanesque manner; the First Baptist, by Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson, in the Gothic style; and the Cathedral of St. Paul (1903-06). The memorial to the soldiers, which wants to imitate the mausoleum of Halicarnassus, has a good Roman-Doric colonnade and an imposing stepped pyramidal roof. The Frick office building, with La Farge stained glass windows, and the Nixon theater are also of architectural interest. The cultural and arts center is located at the entrance to Schenley Park: it includes the Carnegie Institute, the school of technology and the University of Pittsburgh. It is a 31-story skyscraper, designed by Charles Z. Klauder and begun in 1928: the last word in academic architecture. The Carnegie Institute has murals by John White Alexander (Apotheosis of Pittsburgh).

Cultural institutes. – The University of Pittsburgh began, perhaps as early as 1780, as the Pittsburgh Academy and was legally recognized in 1787. In 1819 it took the name of Western University of Pennsylvania; in 1908 the current one of the University of Pittsburgh. In 1927 it had 824 professors and 10,207 students. The Carnegie Institute, founded by Andrew Carnegie with an initial gift of 10 million dollars, to which other subsequent contributions were added, has a section of fine arts, which organizes the only international exhibition of contemporary painting that is held periodically in the United States; it also has a museum (coins, medals, metal objects, modern American paintings) and a library of over 600,000 volumes (1927). Also worth mentioning is the School of Technology, which in 1927 had 335 teachers and 6716 students; L’ Duquesne Catholic University, with schools of liberal arts, commerce, pharmacy, law. The teaching is given there by 104 teachers. Theological teaching is carried out by the Allegheny Theological Seminary (1825) and the Western Theological seminary (1856). A board of directors, composed of 15 members, regulates all education which in 1927 included: 17 secondary schools, 1 teacher training school, 6 special schools, 136 elementary schools, as well as evening schools. There are also parish schools, which include 11 middle schools and 78 grade schools. Finally, it should be remembered that there are numerous private schools and academies.

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania